phone Call

Nursing Home Abuse FAQ

"*" indicates required fields

FREE Case Evaluation
  • Complete this quick and easy form in a matter of minutes.
  • Your FREE Case Evaluation involves no cost and no obligation.
  • We will get back to you right away to explain your rights and answer your questions.
This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Common Questions, Answers About Nursing Home Abuse

The Madison nursing home abuse lawyers at Boller & Vaughan understand the challenges faced by nursing home abuse victims, as well as the questions confronted by families who suspect their loved one may be a victim of neglect or abuse in a nursing home.

Below we present the answers to some frequently asked questions about nursing home abuse. If you believe a loved one is suffering from neglect or abuse in a nursing home or other assisted-care facility, please call us today at 608-268-0268 or contact us online to arrange a FREE, confidential consultation.

What is the difference between neglect and abuse in a nursing home?

Neglect and abuse are distinguished by intent. Neglect may be the passive and unintentional failure to provide a nursing home resident’s needs. Abuse is the intentional harm of a nursing home resident.

Regardless of intent, both neglect and abuse constitute mistreatment and can have life-threatening or fatal consequences for nursing home residents who rely on others for their care.

What behaviors constitute nursing home abuse?

Elder abuse takes many forms, most commonly:

Nursing home residents are vulnerable to all types of elder abuse, and they may be targeted for this vulnerability. Victims of nursing home neglect or abuse are often unable or unwilling to communicate their mistreatment.

What are common signs of nursing home neglect and abuse?

Because some victims are unable to speak on their own behalf and because many cases of elder abuse go unreported, it’s important that family and friends be vigilant for signs of nursing home abuse.

Some common signs of neglect include:

  • Sudden weight loss
  • Poor hygiene
  • Dirty bedding
  • Bedsores
  • Behavioral changes

Signs of physical abuse include:

  • Unexplained bruises, cuts, burns or other injuries
  • Abrasions or bruising on the wrists or ankles, which may indicate the use of restraints
  • Fear or anxiety of a specific staff member
  • Deprivation of medication
  • Deprivation of food and/or water

Common indicators of emotional abuse include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Fear or anxiety of a specific staff member
  • Sudden social withdrawal
  • Unexplained changes in mood or behavior

Signs of sexual abuse include:

  • Torn or bloody undergarments
  • Stained or bloody sheets
  • Bruises around the breasts or genitals
  • Difficulty or discomfort when sitting, standing or walking
  • Sudden onset of genital infections or sexually transmitted disease
  • Fear or anxiety of a specific staff member, particularly regarding bathing, going to the bathroom, or dressing

Warning signs of financial abuse include:

  • Unexplained financial withdrawals or transfers
  • New individual given access to accounts
  • Sudden disinterest in financial holdings
  • Changes to investments, trusts, wills or other holdings or legal documents

What should I do if I suspect nursing home abuse in Wisconsin?

Within the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, the Division or Quality Assurance (DQA) is responsible in part for regulating certain types of health-care providers, specifically care facilities like nursing homes and assisted-living centers.

Reports of suspected neglect or abuse in a nursing home or assisted-living facility may be filed anonymously. To submit a complaint to the DQA, call the toll-free complaint hotline at 800-642-6552.

You can also directly contact a regional office. The DQA Southern Regional Office located in Madison, for example, serves several counties including Dane, Green, Lafayette, Iowa and Rock. Click here to locate and your regional office.

Anyone with a concern or complaint may also contact the Wisconsin Long-Term Care Ombudsman Program at 800-815-0015. Complaints may be filed anonymously.

The program advocates on behalf of individuals age 60 and older who receive long-term care services as residents or tenants of a licensed or certified long-term care facility. Wisconsin’s Ombudsman Program is not an emergency hotline. Instead, the program seeks to resolve problems and advocate for the rights of residents with the goal of enhancing quality of life and care.

What rights do Wisconsin nursing home residents have?

Wisconsin nursing home residents have the legal right to be treated with courtesy, respect, and dignity. By law, nursing home residents cannot to be:

  • Humiliated
  • Harassed
  • Threatened
  • Physically abused
  • Sexually abused
  • Mentally or verbally abused
  • Financially abused
  • Restrained physically or chemically
  • Subjected to involuntary seclusion
  • Discriminated or reciprocated against when they voice grievances about their care or contact the Ombudsman to advocate on their behalf

Moreover, nursing home residents also have the right to private and unrestricted visitation and communication with anyone they choose via in-person visits, telephone or mail.

How can an attorney help victims of nursing home abuse and their families?

Instances of nursing home abuse are rarely limited to one person, and an attorney who has experience with elder abuse cases can help ensure that victims and their families receive the compensation they need to move forward and that the behavior stops before other innocent people suffer.

The Madison nursing home abuse lawyers at Boller & Vaughan are dedicated to helping nursing home abuse victims and their families pursue the financial security they need to cope with medical expenses and other damages.

Our attorneys have an extensive record of success in Wisconsin nursing home abuse cases and have secured some of the highest neglect and abuse settlements in the state.

We offer FREE, no-obligation consultations to help you understand your legal options, and our attorneys work on a contingent-fee basis, which means you don’t pay unless we recover compensation on your behalf.

Please call Boller & Vaughan today at 608-268-0268 or contact us online to arrange your complimentary consultation. Our law firm is based in Madison but we represent clients across the state.

More Cases We Handle

Motor Vehicle Accident Lawyer

Motor Vehicle Accidents

Nursing Home Abuse Lawyer

Nursing Home Abuse

Truck Accidents

Truck Accidents

Spinal Cord Injury

Spinal Cord Injury

Bicycle Accidents

Bicycle Accidents

Wrongful Death

Wrongful Death